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Relics, ancienct prophecies and high tech

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Season 4 was my favorite season, especially because of the beautiful scenery. The 16mm look is nice, plus there’s a lot of atmosphere and the locations change every episode. I want to see more in the next season.

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The Wonderful Worlds of the Outer Limits

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May 1st, 2014
Aside

Fun fun to mess around with site.

In chronological order, up to 2014: Amazing time for sci-fi!

Men In Black III (2012) (Comedy, Scifi)
– More funny aliens

Metal Gear Solid (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– Based on Konami’s Metal Gear Solid Vid-game story centers on Solid Snake, a retired soldier who infiltrates a nuclear weapons disposal facility to neutralize the terrorist threat from FOXHOUND, a renegade special forces unit. He attempts to liberate their two hostages, the head of DARPA and the president of a major arms manufacturer, and stops the terrorists from launching a nuclear strike.

Gears of War (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– The game thrusts players into humankind’s epic battle for survival against the Locust Horde, a nightmarish race of creatures that surface from the bowels of the planet. The story unfolds as a ragtag group of soldiers use every last ounce of strength to survive the onslaught from the forces of evil, which begins on the historic Emergence Day.

Riddick (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– Betrayed by his own kind and left for dead on a desolate planet, Riddick (Diesel) fights for survival against alien predators and becomes more powerful and dangerous than ever before. Soon bounty hunters from throughout the galaxy descend on Riddick only to find themselves pawns in his greater scheme for revenge.

Prometheus (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– Alien prequel which isn’t really a prequel but a whole new mythology with strains of the alien mythology.

Dune (2012) (Scifi)
– A new adaptation of the Frank Herbert classic, Dune.

Dredd (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– DREDD takes us to the wild streets of Mega City One, the lone oasis of quasi-civilization on Cursed Earth. Judge Dredd (Karl Urban) is the most feared of elite Street Judges, with the power to enforce the law, sentence offenders and execute them on the spot – if necessary.

World War Z (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– The story revolves around United Nations employee Gerry Lane (Pitt), who traverses the world in a race against time to stop the Zombie pandemic that is toppling armies and governments and threatening to decimate humanity itself.

Total Recall (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– The film is a remake of the 1990 film that starred Arnold Schwarzenegger.

The Grays (2012) (Scifi)
– A triumvirate of Grays, known as the Three Thieves, has occupied a small Kentucky town for decades–abducting its residents and manipulating fates and bloodlines in hopes of creating an ultra-intelligent human being. Nine-year-old Conner Callahan will face the ultimate terror as he struggles to understand who he has been bred to be and what he must do to save humanity.

20,000 Leagues Under the Sea: Captain Nemo (2012) (Scifi, Fantasy, Sea Monster)
– A look at how Jules Verne’s classic character Captain Nemo created his underwater vessel, the Nautilus.

The Black Hole (2012) (Thriller, Scifi)
– In the original, the explorer craft U.S.S. Palomino is returning to Earth after a fruitless 18-month search for extra-terrestrial life when the crew comes upon a supposedly lost ship, the magnificent U.S.S. Cygnus, hovering near a black hole. The ship is controlled by Dr. Hans Reinhardt and his monstrous robot companion, Maximillian.

Mass Effect (2012) (Thriller, Action, Scifi)
– BioWare’s epic science fiction series takes place in the year 2183 and follows Commander Shepard of the SS Normandy who leads a team on a mission to defeat an ancient alien race that invades the galaxy every 50,000 years, wiping out all organic life.

Dead Space (2012) (Horror, Scifi)
– A sci-fi/horror film based on EA’s hit video game Dead Space. The story is set in the 26th century in deep space, where an engineer who responds to a distress signal from a mining ship finds the vessel infested with monstrous creatures called Necromorphs.

Mortal Engines (2012) (Action, Scifi)
– The books are set in a post-apocalyptic world where cities have become giant vehicles and must consume each other to survive. Mortal Engines is the first book in the series.

The Traveler (2012) (Thriller, Scifi)
– Traveler is set in a U.S. society run by a secret organization seeking to control the population via constant observation. Seeking to rebel against these constraints are an almost extinct group of people called Travelers, who can project their spirit into other dimensions, and their protectors, called Harlequins.

The End of Eternity (2012) (Scifi)
– Based on the Isaac Asimov time travel novel first published in 1955, the film is a futuristic tale in which humanity is controlled by a ruling class called Eternity, members of which can manipulate time to alter history and prevent disasters or wipe out undesirables. One of the time cops flirts with disaster when he breaks the cardinal Eternity rule and falls in love with a woman from another time period.

Dark Void (2012) (Scifi)
– A downed pilot in the Bermuda Triangle finds himself part of an alternate world where aliens are planning on taking over.

Passengers (2012) (Thriller, Scifi)
– Set in the future, Passengers centers on Jim Preston (Reeves), a mechanic on a 120-year journey to a distant colonized planet in another galaxy, who becomes the first traveler to experience pod hibernation failure. Having woken up 100 years too soon, he is stranded in the world of an interstellar spaceship with only robots and androids for companionship.

Machine Man (2012) (Thriller, Scifi)
– Machine Man centers on a tech-savvy man who decides to replace his body parts with high-end titanium upgrades. He realizes that other entities want to use him for their own ends.

The Something (2012) (Comedy, Scifi)
– The story, which the studio is keeping under wraps, is described as an ensemble comedy/horror hybrid set in deep space, similar in tone to Sony’s Zombieland.

Speed Demon (2012) (Comedy, Scifi)
– Speed Demon is about an underworld enforcer, who while hunting a small-time crook on a desert highway discovers that he is also being tracked by a mysterious, terrifying creature.

How To Survive A Robot Uprising (2012) (Comedy, Scifi)
– A technical administrator researches different ways of preventing robots from taking over the world. Based on a manual written by Daniel H. Wilson.

Singularity (2012) (Scifi/Unknown)
– Nothing is known about the story

Spaceless (2012) (Scifi)
– A man wakes up inside a spacesuit tumbling helplessly through space, with a computer designed to keep him company until his air runs out, trying to solve the mystery of his death.

Robocop (2013) (Action, Thriller, Scifi)
– Rumored plotline for the new film: Present day Los Angeles, 20 years after the termination of the RoboCop program, the city decides to reinstate the program.

Elysium (2013)
– Far future film from District 9 writer/director Neill Blomkamp.

Pacific Rim (2013)
– Set in a future in which malevolent creatures threaten the earth, the planet must band together and use highly advanced technology to eradicate the growing menace.

Oblivion (2013)
– The film will feature Tom Cruise as a lone soldier stuck on an uninhabitable Earth’s surface, fixing drones that protect the planet — and its sky-bound clone citizens, who live above the polluted clouds — from attacking aliens. When he finds a beautiful woman in a fallen ship, adventure and an awakening of a past life love ensue.

Robopocalypse (2013)
– Explores the fate of the human race following a robot uprising.

The Forever War (2013)
– An elite task force returns home after a brief interstellar military operation, but discovers that 20 years have past and the planet they once knew is completely different.

All You Need Is Kill (2013)
– The storyline puts a Groundhog Day plot device into a futuristic alien invasion storyline. A raw recruit, pressed into battle against an alien species, gets killed in action. But he is reborn each day to suffer the same fate. Eventually, he notices that he is becoming a better warrior and that other circumstances are changing, which might be the key to altering the outcome.

Hyperion (2013)
– The film is based on two Dan Simmons sci-fi novels – Hyperion and The Fall of Hyperion. The story is set in the distant future, as a space war threatens Hyperion, a planet known for the Time Tombs – large artifacts that can move through time and are guarded by a gruesome monster called the Shrike.

Ender’s Game (2013)
– 70 years after a horrific alien war, an unusually gifted child is sent to an advanced military school in space to prepare for a future invasion.

Warning: Spoilers within.

There have been quite a few movies about mental illness, but most of them are dramatized and exaggerated for the sake of entertainment. Revolution #9 is arguably the most realistic and most analytic-yet-entertaining portrayal of schizophrenia of them all. It accurately documents many different aspects of the deterioration of James Jackson, brilliantly played by Michael Risley and the people around him who are affected by his gradual shift into psychosis.
revolution 9

James Jackson is engaged to Kim Kelly (played by Adrienne Shelly) who are supposed to get married in 6 months. It starts out with small episodes. He accuses a co-worker of moving things around on his desk behind his back to toy with him, and he ends up getting fired for writing reviews of websites he feels are out to send subliminal messages to him. His fiance’s brother has a son, 12 year old Tommy, who tells James about some hacker websites he visits and how they hack servers, and this triggers paranoia in James who consequently accuses Tommy and his boss at work of sending subliminal messages in emails and through websites.

The confrontation between James and Tommy scares Tommy, and this is the first example of how schizophrenia doesn’t just affect the sufferer, but also the people around him. Building on the subliminal messages delusion, James sees a perfume commercial for a company called Revolution #9, and believes there are messages in the video, and eventually hunts down the director of the commercial, by talking to the perfume company and finding the production studio they hired. Upon uncovering the identity of the commercial’s director, a Scooter McRay (played by Spalding Gray), he calls Scooter and says he is a production company that loved the commercial and wants to use him for their own project. Now of course, this is just an ad commercial, and probably not the most creative or personal work from Scooter, who also makes a point to James that he is most known for his still photography. Scooter is a creative guy who never quite made it big-time, and in turn did a couple commercials to make a living, so when he gets a call from James he gets big hopes and thinks James represents a big company and big opportunities for him to take it to the level he always wanted but never did. So in another example of an innocent bystander being affected negatively by James’ delusions, he meets Scooter and ends up confronting him in a very irrational way, leading up to him attacking Scooter and putting him down on the floor.

After James tells his fiance about the subliminal messages in the commercial, she instantly knows something is wrong with him, and contacts a psychiatrist, who after a confrontational meeting prescribes James to antipsychotic medication. His girlfriends family increasingly urges Kim to stay out and cut contact with James, but she loves him and wants to help him get better. After awhile he is consequently put under a court order to stay hospitalized for 2 weeks and to take antipsychotic medication. When 2 weeks have passed, James’ doctor gets a phone call from what looks like an insurance company manager who finances the institution, who asks how their patients are doing. The doctor tells the manager James has taken medication and calmed down, but that he has no insight into his illness and needs to stay longer. The manager, who is operating under financial regulations, asks the doctor if James has been violent to other patients or staff, because patients who are not violent cannot be forcefully hospitalized. Since James has not, he is released, and this shows how difficult it is to get treatment even if you are very sick and how this affects thousands of patents around the country every year.

Now the acting is top notch across the board, which is impressive, especially since it is a very low budget film. Michael as James really shines in how he portrays his inner torment and confusion with just a mere look on his face, and his girlfriend Kim is also great as the confused but loving fiance. Every character in this movie shows depth and each one is their own facet of how such an illness can develop for the victim and the people around the victim. The director also shows some scenes where the light is exaggerated and the cutting is fast and disorienting to show how it could look for a schizophrenic patient.

All in all a very interesting and well executed movie.
9/10.

So there was quite a bit of critique of the Pilot episode of The Event. People found it confusing and some had lost faith in this type of mystery show because of the debatable fail of the Lost finale. However, after watching 3 episodes, I think this has very little in common with Lost, and it could be very cool as the plot unfolds. The first episode set up the premise and the characters, and it did so at a fast pace with many flashforwards/flashbackwards type scenes. But as of the third episode, they severely toned down this style of storytelling, and the episode was more focused on specific events rather than trying to introduce everyone and everything. It is a somewhat complex plot, as there are many people involved and many different time periods. Sometimes it’s 2 weeks ago, 60 years ago, and the present.

It feels more like the hidden conspiracies of 24 than Lost. While The Event has supernatural science-fiction elements, they are not as far fetched as in Lost. It is more based on alien technology, while Lost was more about the truly supernatural and fantasy-like. So far I am hooked. I will follow it into future episodes for sure.

Oh the joys of 90s television.. Before CGI became ultra-realistic and took precedence over story and content (see: Avatar), there were made several TV series with low budget, that still remained fantastic. One of those shows was called ‘The Outer Limits’, with 90s charm and clever twists.

TheOuterLimits_(1995)
The show focused on 1 hour science-fiction gems, where every episode ended in an unexpected twist. There are different characters and leads in every episode, similar to The Twilight Zone. In retrospect I appreciate this show even more because nothing like it has been or is being made. The visual effects, while basic and primitive in many ways, also provided a completely unique atmosphere to the show. Who can forget the last frame of one episode where aliens had taken over the world and an alien had sat itself on the president’s head in the Oval Office while the shot faded out with a view of Washington DC in ruins?

The show just plain worked. And even though it was a sci-fi show, it was also completely rooted in human social relations and societal critique. Many ideas and concepts could be applied to real life occurrences, and while the show could be called ‘crazy’, it never strayed away from its inner human core. This is a show I highly recommend to any sci-fi fan, and luckily for us, all 7 seasons of it is on hulu.com for free!

In no particular order:

Lustmord – [ B E Y O N D ] (Extremely accurate and the perfect incarnation of soft moody dark ambient)
Alva Noto – Xerrox vol 1 and 2 (Beautiful ambient with excellent associations)
Boards Of Canada – Geogaddi (Their weirdest but also most nice album imo)
Autechre – Draft 7.30 (Their most isolating and immersive album)
Air – 10,000 hz Legend (Perfect melodies and nice beats)
Goldmund – Corduroy Road (Amazing quiet piano)
Hybrid – Morning Sci-Fi (Excellent cinematic and scifi breakbeats)
Murcof – Martes (Nice strings and moody glitches)
Plaid – Double Figure (Awesome melodies)
Radiohead – Amnesiac (Better than Kid A)
Sufjan Stevens – Illinois (Beautiful songwriting and instrument use)
Burial – Untrue (Nice atmospherics for late nights)
Elegi – Sisteris (Perfect rendition of haunted shipyards and boats made of wood)
Mira Calix – One On One (Innocence and beauty)